President Trump blasted Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf as a “disgrace” on Thursday for warning residents about upcoming immigration raids.
“What the mayor of Oakland did the other day was a disgrace. Where they had close to a thousand people, ready to be gotten, ready to be taken off the streets. … The mayor of Oakland went out, and she went out and warned them all: scatter,” Trump said during a Cabinet meeting.
“So instead of taking in a thousand, they took in a fraction of that, about 150,” Trump continued.
“It’s certainly something we’re looking at with respect to her, individually,” he added.
Schaaf had publicly warned residents of the San Francisco Bay Area that Immigration and Customs Enforcement would be conducting an operation in the area “starting as soon as within the next 24 hours.”
Acting ICE director Thomas Homan said he believed her warning helped some of their targets evade capture.
While the agency made more than 150 arrests, he said 864 “criminal aliens and public safety threats remain at large in the community, and I have to believe that some of them were able to elude us thanks to the mayor’s irresponsible decision.”
The Department of Justice is reviewing whether Schaff broke any laws, including obstruction of justice, in her decision to warn residents. In the meantime, however, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced earlier this week that it filed a lawsuit against the state of California over its sanctuary city policies.
Schaaf fired back at Sessions's decision: “How dare you vilify members of our community by trying to frighten the American public into thinking all undocumented residents are dangerous criminals?”
“How dare you distort the reality about declining violent crime in a diverse sanctuary city like Oakland, California, to advance your racist agenda,” she added.
“It was not my intention to get caught up in a national debate, but I do believe that I am speaking for the residents of my city,” Schaaf continued. “The agenda of this administration is petty political vindictiveness."